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Harris, Family Law Expert
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2851
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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I am divorced but on the title deed to the house where my ex

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I am divorced but my name is ***** ***** the title deed to the house where my ex wife lives. The house is mortgage free. What happens if either party dies ? What happens if either party severs the joint tenancy ? Our divorce consent order states that the property was to be sold with the proceeds going to my ex wife but she now wants me to remove myself from the title deed so she can continue to live there but I will not do this as she owes me some money.

Hi, thank you for your question. Are you able to attach the court approved consent order here using the paperclip please?

In the meantime, why was the property not sold? Also, is the title held as joint tenants or tenants in common?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The property was not sold because she wanted to stay there and I agreed to this subject to her paying me the money she owed from another property sale. She has not paid me but has asked me to remove myself from the title deed. The property is held as joint tenants.

Thanks for confirming. Unfortunately, the court has clearly made an order for sale and it makes no provision for the property to be transferred to her. She will have no right to vary this order for sale unless there has been fraud or misrepresentation. If she does not comply with this then you will need to apply to court for the order to be implemented. Further, I would imagine that as the property is still in joint names, the mortgage will also still be in your joint names and you will be jointly and severally liable for this, so it would be in your interest to get this sorted to remove your mortgage liability.

I appreciate that this may not be the answer you would have hoped for, but if you found this information helpful please provide a positive rating using the stars at the top of this page. I will not be credited for answering your question without a positive rating. Thank you,

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
As I stated in my initial question the property is mortgage free. What I want to know is what happens to the property should either one of us die whilst both our names are ***** ***** title deed ? And what would happen if the joint tenancy was severed by either party ?

The court order takes precedence over either of you severing the joint tenancy and in the event of either person's death, if it is a joint tenancy and not a tenancy in common the deceased's share automatically passes to the other. However the estate of the deceasedcan apply to implement the order to force a sale as decided by thr court.

Harris, Family Law Expert
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2851
Experience: Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Many thanks

My name is ***** ***** I have been a solicitor for more than 30 years.

Given that there is no longer a mortgage on the property there is no doubt that if your ex applied to the Court for a Variation allowing the transfer of the property into her sole name it WOULD be granted - and she may even obtain a costs order against you

In addition there is no doubt whatsoever that in the event of her death the proceeds of any sale belong to her estate - you no longer have any claim on it whatsoever

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your input. My own solicitor has recently stated " Remember that in the event of death of your wife the property passes to you, and in the event of your death it passes to your wife – so it is a case of winner takes all. It is possible for either one of you to sever the joint tenancy, and if we do not do it I anticipate that at some point shortly your wife will do so; but of course the difficulty with her doing that is that it fixes your share as half of the property "
This is not what he has told me in the past which is why I am confused and therefore posted my question. Are you able to see the advise given by Harris ? This differs to your advise, which confuses me even more.
The consent order does not reflect the true agreement between my ex wife and myself in that we were separated for 4 years before divorcing during which time we continued to share bank accounts. We listed our assets and agreed distribution on a 50/50 basis her taking the majority of the equity's in our property and me retaining the majority of my pension. We were advised that the pension should be discounted as it is not as valuable as property equity etc but as we were amicable, I decided against this. We only applied for a consent order to obtain a pension sharing order as we were advised I could not transfer money from my pension to hers without this. We also had another property sale going through at the time of the the consent order and the sale was protracted and quite complicated so we did not want to put this in danger by including it in the consent order. My side agreement with my ex wife was that we would sell the house and she would retain £350k and I would get 150k. After the consent order was granted, she asked me if I would agree to her staying in the house if our daughter and her husband paid me the £150k and of course I said yes. Unfortunately, during the course of her consulting a solicitor to facilitate this, I believe she was advised that there was no reason to pay me anything. I realise that I was foolish in trusting her to honour the verbal agreement and I now want to find out whether I have a case or not given that I have proof of the other property sale and the distribution of the proceeds in line with our side agreement.

Where did the money to pay off the mortgage come from?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
From the sale of the other property. There was a mortgage of £140k

That property was owned in joint names?

How were the proceeds divided between you?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
joint names, property sold for 282k of which 140k paid off mortgage on the remaining property, 42k to me, 84k to ex wife, the remainder was used to pay off her credit card, circa 7k and sale costs

Why was that the way that it was divided?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We added up our assets, property and pensions and agreed a 50/50 split. She was to have 2/3rds of the property value as I was taking the majority of my share in pensions. Basically, there was 126k left (after paying the mortgage on the remaining property) so it was split 1/3 to me 2/3 to her. The intention then was to sell the remaining property (now mortgage free) for 450 to 500k and split it 2/3 to her 1/3 to me therefore giving me another 150k to go with the 42k.


So why was that not in the agreement?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
because we only had a consent order as a vehicle to enable the pension sharing and I didn't think it mattered if it didn't reflect the agreement we had reached amicably. I was foolish in the extreme and I realise that now. The consent order did not include the £282k property sale either so it did not really reflect the true financial position

So the assets was not disclosed on the Statement of Information for a Consent Order?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That is correct the statement of information was not accurate because it did not include all our assets

Then you may be able to reopen it - you should speak to the solicitor who dealt with the matter

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok thank you